An unrestored Superman rarity — and one of the most popular titles in comics history — is expected to headline a major comics and comic art auction and fetch more than $300,000.
The 80-year-old copy of Superman #1 featured by Heritage Auctions is unrestored and was given a condition rating of 4.5 by the comic grading service Certified Guaranty Company (CGC).
Superman #1 arrived on newsstands in 1939 barely a year after the Man of Steel’s first appearance in Action Comics #1, to support his meteoric rise in popularity. It marked the first time a character created for comic books was given his own title. And despite the estimated one million copies of Superman #1 that were printed in 1939, very few are known to have survived in this or better condition, according to Heritage Auctions.
The current bid is at $220,000, but Heritage expects it to fetch more than $300,000.
One of just eight Famous Funnies covers by the legendary artist Frank Frazetta is also expected to headline Heritage’s Comics Comic Art auction, to be held on Feb. 21-23 in Dallas, Texas.
The Famous Funnies #209 Cover Original Art (Eastern Color, 1953), which features a “195os retro style” is one of the most coveted Frazetta covers for any comic, according to Heritage Auctions. It has also been estimated to fetch more than $300,000.
Other comics featured in the auction include a copy of The Incredible Hulk #1 (Marvel, 1962), the second-most valuable Silver Age issue. With a rating of 9.0, this issue is also a rare find. It features the origin and first appearance of the Hulk, and features art and cover by Jack Kirby. It’s expected to fetch more than $200,000.
Also up for auction is a Dave Gibbons Watchmen #1 Cover Original Art (DC, 1986), with a pre-auction estimate of more than $200,000. Among the most influential and iconic comic series of the 1980s, Watchmen by Gibbons and Alan Moore has had a lasting impact on the industry. The cover of the first issue, with the drip of blood on the smiley face button, remains one of the most recognizable images in the series.
Another issue up for auction that should appeal to serious collectors is Journey Into Mystery #83 (Marvel, 1962), which features the origin and first appearance of Thor, who is billed on the cover as “The Most Exciting Super-Hero of All Time!!” This copy carries a grade of 9.4, one of highest grades known to exist, and is the highest-graded issue offered by Heritage in three years.
See all Heritage’s comic auctions on their website.
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